Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits

by Refugee Empowerment International
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Give Hope to Mothers in Myanmar with Baby Kits
Meeting the mothers
Meeting the mothers

Recently people have a little more freedom to move around in Karen State, Myanmar, but there are still problems such as the danger of land mines and indiscriminate attacks by soldiers. Medical facilities continue to be limited and it will take years for proper functioning health systems to be re-established. We can only imagine the anxiety that new mothers face if they have to give birth without the assistance of a birth attendant or doctor.

The baby kits funded by RIJ, while providing important support, also feel like a gift that can make people feel quite special. This promotes a ‘feel-good’ factor that encourages the mothers to listen to the health information provided in the health message that teaches them how to care for their baby and themselves. In turn, this must impact the baby because it gives the mother better peace of mind before giving birth.

The kits contain simple things that many of us take for granted: soap, washing detergent, nail clippers and baby wraps. We can learn from this too – sometimes our lives are too complicated!

Provision of the kits is far more effective than providing cash support because it makes the mothers feel special, it makes them feel someone cares and the information provided through the health message ensures the mothers continue to care for their children, themselves and the rest of the family.

Purchasing the kits locally further empowers the community workers as well as providing business to the local traders. This, in turn, avoids extra transportation costs.

The people distributing the kits gain the confidence of the community because they are bringing support and assistance. Through this they can learn more of other issues and challenges facing the community and understand how to provide further support to the displaced communities.

"It really helped the family who got the kits to keep the whole family clean and healthy and reduced the burden of the family needs."

"KWO staff members at different levels are able to manage more work in the community through the experience they learned by implementing this project activity and increased their skills in management and negotiation within the community."

We appreciate your valuable support that enables us at RIJ to continue our work that creates opportunities for people to live as normal life as possible despite the challenges they face.

Camp access is limited
Camp access is limited
Contents of the baby kit
Contents of the baby kit
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Communal group
Communal group

Your generous support has ensured women living in camps in Myanmar have received baby kits with essential health and hygiene items to give their newborns a good start in life.

One of the mothers who received the kit said:
"While we are displaced we don't have enough clothes or food or shelter. We have to move from here to there. In this time we received a gift so it made us feel so happy. Even if we received only a piece of cloth and a bar of soap, I feel so happy and I feel like somebody cares for me and is willing to help me, even to go through all the obstacles to get to me. So I felt very encouraged."

It is important to just feel that someone cares. Giving birth is an exciting but traumatic experience at the best of times. These women are living in camps in very tough conditions in the jungle, in small houses made of bamboo with leaf roofing. For those who find themselves without any support, it is even more worrying.

The provision of baby kits to new mothers goes beyond just caring. The health leaflet that accompanies the distribution of the kits provides guidance on looking after the baby as well as the mother. For most of these women, they will have received little to no antenatal education about pregnancy, birth and caring for a newborn, starkly compared to the overabundance of information and educational courses available to mothers in more developed countries.

The distribution of the baby kits is clearly improving the health of babies and their mothers. For example, one mother we met explained how she had learnt about the different cycles of breast milk production which removed a huge amount of anxiety when feeding her baby. Another mother had never used soap for her babies before, instead cleaning her previous babies with fruit.

The program’s reach is more than direct support to the mother and her baby and having positive effects on the wider family. In the words of one camp leader;
"Because we are able to distribute Baby Kits our whole community benefits. Even if some mothers only received a few items, the whole family feels better."

With your kind support, RIJ can continue raising global funds for local projects like this. Through RIJ, you can support sustainableprojects that work at a local level in communities to empower refugees to build a brighter and better future. Thank you.

Extended family
Extended family
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Organization Information

Refugee Empowerment International

Location: Minato-ku, Tokyo - Japan
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @REI_intl
Project Leader:
Jane Best
Minato-ku, Tokyo Japan
$7,255 raised of $20,000 goal
 
149 donations
$12,745 to go
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